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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

'Seeing Daddy off'


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Is it possible to identify the regiment of this reservist, photographed in the first week-10 days of the war?




"The little one in the photograph has come to the railway station with her daddy, a Reservist, who has been called up for service."
Abergavenny Chronicle, Friday 14th August 1914





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Possibly the Brecknockshire battalion of the South Wales Borders.  Initially a Volunteer Rifle Corps they then became a Volunteer Battalion of the South Wales Borderers in the years after 1881.  After 1908 and the formation of the Territorial Force they became a TF Battalion of the South Wales Borderers while retaining their own insignia.  Having been obliged to wear white collar and cuffs after 1881, the SWB and their TF battalions, ostensibly returned to their original green facings after the Boer War, but the Brecknocks, whose uniforms were funded by the local, TF County Association, were unable to afford a wholesale change and uniforms were still in a state of transition.  There was at least one sub-unit of the Brecknocks based in Brecon’s TF Drill Hall. Each of the white stars on his right cuff represents 4-years ‘returned’ (annually reported) as ‘efficient’.


Another possibility is the Monmouthshire Regiment, whose history was similar to the Brecknocks, except that in 1908 they were granted an independent status from the SWB until 1922, when they rejoined and once again became a part of that regiment.  The Monmouth's cap badge was the same Welsh dragon, but without the title scroll of the Brecknocks.  Their principal drill hall was in Abergavenny (Baker St).  The change over between white and green facings applied equally.


For further detail see:  


1.  https://web.archive.org/web/20080113045449/http://www.regiments.org/regiments/uk/volmil-wales/vinf/br-1.htm


2.  https://web.archive.org/web/20080117052855/http://www.rrw.org.uk:80/museums/brecon/fact_sheets/18.htm


3.  http://www.breconremembers.co.uk/WW1_Brecon_U3A.pdf


4.  http://royalwelsh.org.uk/downloads/B07-11-MONR-WW1-AllBattalionsTF.pdf




mons cap 1.jpg

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Thank you very much, FROGSMILE. I have to admit that, although the photo appeared in an Abergavenny newspaper, I'd assumed that it had been released by some sort of propaganda unit based in London. Very interesting that it seems to have been taken somewhere in the South East of Wales.

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Glad to help.  He wears a full dress uniform that would have been directly associated with his local drill hall.  The photo taken at Abergavenny station in that dress suggests to me that he was most likely in the Monmouth’s.

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